Home > Amiga & AROS > Fleecy Moss Answers Amigaworld’s Questions Fleecy Moss Answers Amigaworld’s Questions Eugenia Loli 2003-03-15 Amiga & AROS 19 Comments Amiga.org reports that Fleecy Moss of Amiga Inc replies to the first batch of questions from the AmigaWorld thread created for this purpose. This is the first of a planned series of similar sessions. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 19 Comments 2003-03-15 7:45 pm Not trying to be insulting or anything, But when are they going to release the new Amiga OS and Computer, it seems like they are so close but it doesnt seem like they plan to do anything anytime soon but get everbody excited. 2003-03-15 8:08 pm And for that matter, what kind of a name is Fleecy Moss? I don’t know, I wish the Amiga name would stop being passed around like cheap booze. It’s depressing that one of Commodore’s most amazing achievements is still being kicked around in the dirt by whoever spews the most buzzwords. 2003-03-15 8:17 pm BS, no one asked when it would be released. Don’t want to answer that one I guess. I don’t think that anyone cares about anything, but the release date at this point. They say that the new Amiga is going to be so great, but we haven’t seen a thing. No matter how they release it, no matter what it runs on, and no matter how limited, they have to release something other than a screen shot. Let a few people write a review of what you have. They say that they don’t want to respond to naysayers with words. Well, why not respond with product? They have really left people with no option, but to expect that they have let Amiga waste away into somthing that is competitive with Macintosh System 6 or Windows 3.1. I don’t want to believe it, but a company can’t spend so many years doing nothing to an OS and just expect it to be competitive with a little work no matter how well designed it was in the first place. Even Be, which was more actively developed to the end, was begining to show its age. It couldn’t use a USB mouse. Networking was immature compared with 7 year old versions of the Mac/Windows. There is more to an OS than elegant design. Upkeep is what has made Windows dominant. Other than the Mac, the only alternative desktop OS that has decent upkeep is Linux. Linux supports most modern hardware and technologies. Sure, it’s a monstrosity, but I’m sure the Windows code isn’t any better. I think that everyone gets my point, so I’m going to stop. 2003-03-15 8:48 pm BS, no one asked when it would be released. After several missed “absolutely final deadlines” (including one this month IIRC) Amiga, Inc. have given up telling people when Hyperion will be done with OS4. deferring to Hyperion now. For their part, Hyperion tells questioners, “It’ll be done when it’ll be done.” Hyperion have a pretty good reputation among Amiga people for actually producing what they say they’ll produce, so the nightmare one might have had to endure isn’t there. The AmigaOne is actually in production BTW, although also delayed by production hiccups; OS4 is the biggest holdup atm. Sad about ARexx having to be emulated though; I always thought that was a sweet tool. 2003-03-15 9:24 pm Sad about ARexx having to be emulated though; I always thought that was a sweet tool. Far better with emulation than being left out. ARexx is only a scripting language in any case, so it won’t affect performance much, whether emulated or native. 2003-03-15 9:34 pm I’d still like to see something to reassure myself. OpenBeOS is producing some things even though it still requires a working installation of R5 to supplement what they don’t have. I’m just sick of Linux being the only viable alternative OS (exception given to the Mac which is kinda more of a platform). 2003-03-15 9:40 pm Same feeling about linux, unix, lindows, bsd, darwin… Got enough of Un*x ;((( 2003-03-16 12:46 am Okay, since I’ve asked about a couple of other things in the past few days, I might as well as here to: what is Amiga, and what advantages does it have over other available current OS’s? Thanks. 2003-03-16 1:57 am And for that matter, what kind of a name is Fleecy Moss? A wicked-cool one! — though I have no idea what kind of a person she is. 2003-03-16 2:40 am Okay, since I’ve asked about a couple of other things in the past few days, I might as well as here to: what is Amiga, and what advantages does it have over other available current OS’s? My “short” take on it: Amiga was the state-of-the-art in personal computing from its introduction in 1985 (?) until (at least) Commodore’s demise in the early 90s. From the start, its OS had a flat memory model; a color windowing & mouse GUI; a pre-emptive multitasking scheduler; three coprocessor chips dedicated to multimedia and IO (smoothest mouse response, bar none); a direct-to-TV-video interface (characteristic of hobby computers of the 70s and 80s); a DMA bus; a Motorola 680×0 CPU (16-bit or 32-bit external depending on the model, 32-bit internal) & some features that were really great ideas at the time but are today probably unnecessary (eg draggable screens), & lots of features I’ve left out. One major drawback: no OS memory management. I have read this was part of the original OS plan, but was dropped due to time constraints, & then the messaging system was implemented in a way that rather ruined prospects of MM. But then again no desktop OS had memory management in the 80s. I bought a used Amiga 500 (1987 hw) in 1991 or 1992 & used it to surf the web, do email, program, and type up my schoolwork, until it died right before Christmas 1998. 🙁 I don’t know any other 1987 desktop platform that was able to do all that, although apparently there’s a new C-64 OS that will do the web now. 🙂 Some people even run web servers on Amigas. They were heavily used in the television industry for a long time (Video Toaster-powered Amigas did the computer animation for Babylon 5 for example) until the rest of the world caught up sometime after Commodore’s demise. Commodore was (reputed to be) a badly mismanaged company whose owners didn’t realize what a gem of a machine they had. They died a long, slow, painful death. The Amiga was tossed around from company to company, each new company promising to do something new and visionary with it. My personal favorite vision was Gateway’s QNX concept, but Gateway themselves sabotaged that, and then… In the meantime, nothing substantial really happened, although a lot of Commodore warehouses were cleared and in the late 90s one company even assembled the last few batches of Amiga 1200s (? I think) & sold them. Today, the Amiga legacy is in a bit of turmoil; it has been acquired by a small group who have a nice vision but not a lot of money. Right about that time, the US tech economy went south. So while the current “Amiga, Inc.” is working on completely new stuff they contract much of the legacy development to Hyperion (a competent game company) and Eyetech (a hardware dealer). I understand the HW is basically ready, but OS4 is still a ways off. But, the “soon”-to-be-released Amiga platform per se won’t be as revolutionary as the old one; after 10 years they’re mostly trying to get the thing to run on modern HW & implement memory management, & some other niceties. I can’t wait to see it, though. 😛 What the current “Amiga, Inc.” is working on, is a platform that is supposed to be “Write Once, Run Anywhere” called “Amiga Anywhere” or “Amiga DE”. It’s built off a platform by Tao. Unfortunately, they haven’t been able to keep to their original timetable, or to any subsequent timetable, really. They acquired not merely the Amiga name, but also the Amiga curse… but at least they’re hanging in there. There, that should give you more than you wanted. & I’m sure Mike Bouma will correct any errors I’ve made. 🙂 2003-03-16 3:43 am Man I have heard that story about how great the Amiga was about one zillion time. Let it go just let it go. Times change. You don’t hear italiens here going on an on about how great the roman empire was or wasn’t do? Things change and improve. The good old days are the past. And I think Amiga Inc is just a money hungry corp that doesn’t innovate and has no inspiration of the old amiga computer. And just want to cash in on your sentimentalties (spelling point = 1). Now with the choice of Apple OSX, Linux and Windows XP it will be really hard to get anyone to the Amiga especialy like how they are working now: a closed platform. smurf 2003-03-16 4:50 am Jack- Thanks for your time and excellent explination. Smurf975- He was just answering my question. He wasn’t pining for the past; he even said he didn’t think the new Amiga was going to be so revolutionary. Go away. 2003-03-16 9:32 am “Far better with emulation than being left out. ARexx is only a scripting language in any case, so it won’t affect performance much, whether emulated or native.” Actually ARexx can run very fast under emulation, for example on Amithlon. The core library is pretty small, so I guess it is soon all in the JIT buffer. 2003-03-16 10:20 am @ Sean Feel free to ask well formulated questions yourself @ AmigaWorld. 2003-03-16 12:23 pm Fleecy Moss is a guy. 🙂 Pretty cool with the interviews, although he doesn’t say too much in this one. He’s been with the Amiga for quite some time and served Amiga Inc. both during the Gateway era (where he was fired) and during this era. A picture (it’s him to the right): http://email@example.com 2003-03-16 12:31 pm >Now with the choice of Apple OSX, Linux and Windows XP it will be really hard to get anyone to the Amiga especialy like how they are working now: a closed platform. I agree about that story which should remain in the past,… BUT: nowadays, I don’t think you really have an OS “choice”: The only thing I see is: if you don’t wanna/can’t use windows, the ONLY viable OS is UNIX… Linux is Unix… and MacOSX, despite the non-use of XFree, will always remains an UNIX OS… (Linux is unix in the sense it shares the same idea, the same “everything is a directory”, same API,…) I think new OSs like MorphOS, OpenBeOS could finally let people CHOOSE what they WANT and not choose what they DON’T WANT (no win -> linux) 2003-03-16 5:14 pm You don’t hear italiens here going on an on about how great the roman empire was or wasn’t do? Funny you should ask, my mother is Italian and both she and her late father have waxed eloquently on the virtues of the Roman Empire. When I used to lie sick in bed as a child she would tell me stories of Cicero and Caesar and Pompey. So, since you ask… yes? 🙂 2003-03-16 6:56 pm The questions were answered in a non-politically correct way (I mean, not like typical US companies or politicians where the answer seems to have no relation to the question) and there was a feeling of blunt honesty to his responses. I like that. It is what all company leaders should have: integrity, humanity and realism. Sadly, this is the exception, not the rule… 2003-03-17 6:26 am @captain chris Owning an Amiga in the mid 80s was the most enviable thing to do. You have to remember that many computer users, were either running on green screen XT IBMs with no sound or mouse control or running Apple screens with a simple black and white gui. In 1985 Amiga 1000 launched almost seemingly from thin air, no one expected this behemoth – no one! Boasting full color gfx, 4 channel stereo sound and a mouse driven rom resident multimedia OS. All back in 1985! No one would have imagined at the time that an equivalent OS from m$ was to take another 10 years to realise. Had it not been for Commodore’s collapse. Who knows were Amiga would be today! You see Amiga was built as a mutlimedia friendly computer from the word go. But bad marketing from commodore and dismal preconceptions from its rivals as a glorified games computer hurt its sales. But out of everyone who ever owned an Amiga, not one person I met ever said they were disappointed or unsatisfied with it as a home machine, albeit it was much more than that for most owners (more of a digital extension of a limb) So why are ppl still singing praises over a 18 year old platform? Maybe because there wasn’t anything comparable to it from pc or mac until the late 90s. And even then we are all too familiar with their shortcomings. One of the cornerstones to its immense success has to be the fact that Amiga was probably one of the only platforms ever created out of a dream, rather than financial viability or profit. It was almost entirely created as a one man project by a visionary and dreamer known as Jay Miner. He had a vision of bringing forwards a new wave of computing, in the form of the revolutionary 68k motorola processor. Inspired by US military flight sims, his dream and yearning for a supercomputer gaming machine to wow the masses, finally manifested into the eventual creation of the Amiga. Having worked for Atari, Jay was no stranger to gaming. I won’t bore you ppl with the finer details, but a good source for the complete Amiga story and its humble beginnings is none other than… http://amiga.emugaming.com/ahistory.html Another good source is… http://www.jamesalanpatterson.com/amiga.html Chau.